PM slams newspaper for publishing “disinformation” in Editorial

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PM slams newspaper for publishing “disinformation” in Editorial

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has described as “shameless,” an Editorial in the Sunday Guardian surrounding his assets and the Integrity Commission.

The 7th January, 2024 Editorial said: “It was regrettable that Dr Rowley has so many assets that he forgot to include a recently purchased townhouse in his declaration.”

The PM, in a social media post, said: “This is printed and published as a statement of fact after the Editor accused me of being “shameless” for having the temerity to defend my reputation from persistent baseless allegations originating from UNC platforms and relentlessly pursued by elements of the Integrity Commission.

“What is regrettable is that a national newspaper could so recklessly tamper with a person’s reputation by publishing disinformation which has, as its only purpose, providing support for lies told in the political arena.

Rowley added: “What is shameless is that this disinformation in an editorial is published in the face of mountains of evidence to the contrary, in the public domain, even in the files of the said newspaper.

“I want to make it abundantly clear that, at no time, did I or any person acting on my behalf, including my attorneys, ever advance, anywhere, that I did not include my townhouse in my declaration and further that this occurred because I forgot to do so.”

“On the contrary, it is common knowledge, that the day after the UNC made the allegation, in 2021, that I had a townhouse that I failed to declare to the Integrity Commission, I called a press conference and produced my declaration of 2019 to show that I did declare my ownership of any and all townhouse/s owned by me.”

Rowley said, “This declaration was properly done on the prescribed Form A, as required by law. In the face of this public response to the unfounded allegation, it was then advanced by the UNC and, surprisingly, the Integrity Commission, that it should have been declared on Form B.”

He noted, “Their ridiculous argument was that since it was declared on Form A and not on Form B then I had not declared it and I was hiding it from the public.
In the face of this nonsense, I once again appeared before the media to point out that;-
1. the prescribed Form B requires a declaration of land (without buildings)
2. the prescribed Form A requires a declaration of real property (“including apartments and townhouses”).

“In this second press conference the proof was presented to the media in the form of access to a document sent to the Cabinet, by the Integrity Commission, requesting that the parent Act be amended to allow for the prescribed Form B to require property other than land to be included on form B. Since this has not been done to date then my public argument and factual presentations stand unchallenged by the Integrity Commission.”

Rowley said: “Notwithstanding any and all of these facts, it is now public information, as presented today in the Guardian, that I have been subjected to two years of three (3) “Investigations” surrounding this matter.
Arising out of all of it, on June 29th 2023, the Integrity Commission, finally, issued a letter of Termination reporting that it has found me to have broken no law nor was I found to be in breach of the Integrity in Public Life Act.”

“As a result of these findings the UNC protested. On November 23rd, 2023 the Integrity Commission, reversed its termination of June 29th and reopened, and even broadened, its investigations.
This November 23rd investigation was apparently concluded, and on December 29th my attorney was so informed.
According to the Guardian and the UNC, I am not to defend myself, especially my reputation, from those who thrive on disinformation.”

He said, “It is their view that my objection to their lies and disinformation, aimed at my reputation, is an “attack” on the Integrity Commission and me putting myself above the law.
Maybe I should just have ignored the blatant misrepresentation and disinformation provided in today’s editorial.”

“No chance. I intend to stick with the facts of every situation and defend myself at every turn, regardless of the source or station,” the PM concluded.